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Morning: Time for coffee and wisdom

Morning at the table; cup of Joe to my right. The sun is making feeble efforts to break through the clouds and so am I.

I begin my day with the wisdom scriptures, specifically the book of Proverbs. Solomon was the “wisest man who ever lived,” (2Chron 1:12). Might as well go with the best.

OK, Solomon, do your thing. I need to understand this world a little bit better.

Solomon has a character in his book, unnamed, but best described as “Lady Wisdom.” She is Solomon’s alter ego, the literary Superman, or Superwoman to his Clark Kent. Like a woman, she hides her secrets and only reveals them to the ones who pursue her. So I need to pursue, because I need good answers.

What’s my verse today?

“When the storm has swept by, the wicked are gone, but the righteous stand firm for ever.” Proverbs 10:25, NIV.

The problem with the NIV (Nearly Inspired Version — ha ha) is that it tries too hard to explain the verse. This is easy to figure out. People who do righteous things can endure the tough times better. 

I’ll check the King James. For a 400-year-old book, I like how it treats the book of Proverbs.

“As the whirlwind passeth, so is the wicked no more: but the righteous is an everlasting foundation.” Proverbs 10:25, KJV

The word “proverb” means to compare and so I compare one point against the other to get it’s meaning. In my mind I’m starting to draw a little box with four corners. This is the best way to dissect a verse. The word “wicked” is on one corner, the “righteous” on the other. Below them there is the term “nothing” on one side and “foundation” on the other.

Tornados have swept through the Midwest someplace. I saw it on the news. Piles of rubble everywhere, the stuff that made up people lives, run through a blender so that it all looks the same. People are going back to find their homes. Some find only the foundation. Some find nothing.

Isn’t life like that? Tornados come along and slam the good and the bad, young and old, rich and poor. We all stand there in that moment, eyes blinking back the tears saying, “Hey, I had plans. I had things to do. Now it is all gone. I’m back to square one. I have to start over.” 

For some reason I start thinking of my kids. We sure tried to be good parents. I know we gave it a lot of thought, but life can be tough, and whether we were good or bad, the storms are going to come for them like they came for us.

We couldn’t be perfect, but I think we were foundations. We didn’t offer them a perfect home, but we did offer them something to build on. Now they can make their own “house.” They can do it their own way, but we did give them a starting point.

Some of the things they were raised with, they will make their own. Some they will think about and decide against. At least they have some things to choose from.

I feel better.

The coffee is done. The sun is making progress and so should I.

“Want To Be Wise? Applying the Wisdom Of Solomon To the Modern Issues We All Face,” by Jeff Smith, is available through Wine Press Publishers.

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